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Minutes: 01/30/09

Meeting Date: Friday, January 30, 2009
Host City: Millbrae

Call to Order: Chair Terry Nagel called the meeting to order at 6:35 pm following the completion of the San Mateo County City Selection Committee Business Meeting.

Roll Call: Secretary/Treasurer Marge Colapietro called the roll.

Present: Atherton, Belmont, Brisbane, Burlingame, Colma, Daly City, East Palo Alto, Foster City, Half Moon Bay, Menlo Park, Millbrae, Pacifica, Portola Valley, San Bruno, San Carlos, San Mateo and Woodside

Absent: Hillsborough, Redwood City and South San Francisco

The quorum is eleven. A quorum was present.

San Mateo County Board of Supervisors Report: Board President Mark Church gave an update regarding the Genentech case in which the South San Francisco company has claimed an overpayment of $18 million in taxes. The case is centered on the method of classification of Genentech’s business. There is optimism that the settlement is fair and equitable and that any refund owed to the company will be spread out as “credits” on future returns rather than paid as a lump sum of money.

Introduction of Special Guests: Chair Terry Nagel introduced

  • Tom Brocher, Team Chief Scientist with the U.S. Geological Survey – Earthquake Hazards Team
  • Paul Saffo, Technology Forecaster, Consulting Professor and teacher in the School of Engineering at Stanford University
  • JoAnn Scordino, CERT Coordinator for the San Mateo County Office of Emergency Services
  • Kenneth Dueker, Coordinator of Palo Alto Homeland Security and Public Outreach
  • April Vargas of Threshold 2008.

Welcome by Mayor of Host City: Mayor Robert Gottschalk welcomed everyone to the City of Millbrae and noted that 62 persons were present for this first meeting of 2009. He invited everyone to attend Millbrae’s weekend celebration of the Lunar New Year, which will include an afternoon Mah Jong Tournament and an evening “Jasmine Blossom Performance” on January 31 followed on February 1 with a morning parade, ceremonials and many events and opportunities at the city’s Civic Center venues.

Approval of Minutes: The minutes of the December 19, 2008 meeting were unanimously approved.

Committee Reports: None.

Treasurer’s Report: Secretary/Treasurer Marge Colapietro presented the report covering the period of January 1, 2008 through December 31, 2008, indicating that the report is exactly balanced with the San Mateo City Employees Federal Credit Union, which maintains the account. The balance forwarded on January 1, 2009, was $4,034.79. Written copies of the detailed report were distributed to all present.

Old Business: Chair Terry Nagel distributed a calendar of future meeting times and locations. She mentioned that officers of the Council of Cities will plan meeting topics unless host city representatives advise the officers at least two months in advance that they have a special topic in mind.

New Business:

  • Brisbane Councilwoman Sepi Richardson thanked everyone for her election to the Board of the League of California Cities and noted that there are two seats available on the Policy Committee of the League.
  • Foster City Councilwoman Linda Koelling, who serves as President of the Peninsula Division of League of California Cities, invited everyone to the next meeting on February 26. The topic will be the state budget.
  • Councilwoman Koelling reminded everyone about the Annual Bocce Ball Tournament to be held in April. She encouraged San Mateo County cities to put teams together so that the gold winner’s cup can be brought back to our county.
  • Chair Nagel announced that the next Council of Cities Dinner/ Meeting will be on Friday, February 27, in Daly City. Tara Hunt will speak on “Using Web 2.0 to Engage Citizen Superheroes.”

Meeting Program: “Making Citizens Partners in Emergency Preparedness”

Terry Amsler, Program Director of the Institute for Local Government’s Collaborative Government Initiative, opened the program with a brief history of his contract work on behalf of the League of California Cities. His charge is to help cities in the state with civic engagement projects. Terry Nagel assisted him and Greg Keidan of the ILG in hosting a seminar in Burlingame on November 9, 2008, at which representatives from San Mateo County cities shared how their respective cities are creating partnerships between cities and residents for emergency preparedness and response. Terry Amsler may be contacted at:

Annette Glanckopf, Vice Chair of the Midtown Residents Association of Palo Alto, said the Palo Alto program is built around Block Preparedness Coordinators (BPCs) and Neighborhood Preparedness Coordinators. Business and residential neighbors meet regularly to get to know each other and learn about each other’s special needs. Neighbors set up a phone tree and email list so that information can be quickly disseminated. When power and phones go out, radios and runners will be used to establish a communications link to BPCs and to the city EOC. For more information, visit

Terry Nagel started the first Neighborhood Network in Burlingame because she was concerned that some residents were operating under the false assumption that “they will rescue me if there is an emergency.” Neighbors filled out forms with contact information and listed special skills and supplies that might be useful during an emergency. Each group’s block captains send out e-newsletters and fliers to publicize training for emergency preparedness, urge residents to get connected with city alert systems and plan social events. The Neighborhood Network organizers also received a grant that enabled them to hire a cartoonist from the San Francisco Chronicle to produce emergency preparedness fliers that are fun to read. Terry Nagel can be contacted at

Marge Colapietro gave an overview of Millbrae’s emergency communication organizational structure, then presented a diagram of the auxiliary communications “tree” and described current training programs available to community members. Millbrae’s EOC incorporates a mobile “Comm Van” that is managed by a retired police sergeant. Millbrae’s Fire Department offers LEND, MURS Radio and CERT training programs. The Millbrae Amateur HAM Radio Operators Club has also been incorporated into the response team. The Millbrae Police Department trains community volunteers for the Millbrae Volunteers in Policing (MVP) who are responsible for over 40 duties, the Senior Welfare Call and the Neighborhood Watch programs. The goal is to have as many well trained, well prepared volunteers throughout the community during the most sensitive times of disasters and emergencies and to keep the core volunteer responders involved after they are trained. Marge Colapietro may be contacted at

Adjournment: The meeting was adjourned at 8:55 pm by Chair Nagel.

Submitted by:

Marge Colapietro
Secretary/Treasurer of SMC Council of Cities
and Councilwoman – City of Millbrae

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